I call it the Lobster Festival, because I am not a fan of the branding that the Bathurst group chose and really in this second iteration of the Festival, the crew from Belledune, well we made it our own!
Months of work went into the planning of the two days of events. And I had the best crew anyone could ever hope for. Some veteran volunteers but what really stood out is how many people were a part of the team and it was their first time getting involved.
The two nights of events kicked off with a Gala Dinner where regional companies and
individuals purchased seats and tables for what was a magnificent feast. Our volunteers ran Lobster Bisque out, then a two lobster meal, and capped off with Macaroon Creme Brûlée’s. It was an amazing night. So many dishes…..
The next day we had a full day of family entertainment and events. Inflatables, face-painting, a lobster roll eating competition, a band, fireworks and $2 Lobster rolls of which we sold around 1000. People who had never been to Belledune but only lived minutes away, travelled in and were amazed at the quality of not just the food but the event and how beautiful our community was.
This event was a great success, we had budgeted 20,000 for it and it only ended up costing around 13,000. We could have made more but we wanted to keep the price of the Lobster rolls low. Which was good since people ended up ordering by the dozen. We were supposed to have this event at the new municipal hall; however constant delays (I’ll get to that in a later post) forced us to cancel our original band, juggle countless bookings and reorganize on the fly. The committee from Bathurst even threatened to pull out their support at one point. To which I replied, “Fine, do it. We will have a great event and I will make sure that everyone knows that we did it without you!” What I learned during these exchanges was that the surrounding area has a very patronizing view of Belledune and the people in it. But at the end of the weekend the current mayor’s wife told me that it was the “best event I’ve ever been to in the region.” A statement which I whole-heartedly agree with, and one that couldn’t have been done without a truly amazing team.